When I read the April 10 article about the state trying to improve the ratio of adults obtaining education or training beyond high school, the words “fund preschool” kept echoing through my mind. If the state is serious about its goal, a great place to start would be to remove the barrier that denies Idaho kids a good start academically.
Despite strong evidence, the Legislature doesn’t take action, and offers up weak reasoning. If we’re being intellectually honest, we’d admit that not having preschool hurts Idaho’s competitiveness, and especially its less fortunate kids. I wish the Legislature would move from a preschool resistance movement to a discussion about the challenge of funding it.
Funding preschool would take longer than 2020 to show results at the adult level, but in time it could significantly raise the state’s metric mentioned in the article. The state knows that the future belongs to those who have more education and training; what the state’s leadership needs to accept is that it won’t reach a lofty goal by continuing to ignore preschool. If we don’t start investing, we’ll never see the benefit.
Mike Sherack, Boise